The Environmental Health division conducts the Private Water Well program. The purpose of the program is to ensure that private water wells are properly constructed, prevent water borne illnesses and provide safe drinking water to those not on community water supplies. Another purpose of the program is to have abandoned wells sealed to prevent a safety hazard for children, animals or even adults from falling into them, causing injury or death. Abandoned wells also are a source of possible groundwater pollution from contaminated surface water, agricultural runoff, and effluent from private sewage disposal systems.
The Environmental Health staff issues well permits, inspects wells as they are being constructed and during installation of the pump, distributes water bottles and collects water samples.
Closed Loop Wells
Permits are issued for all new, modified, or sealed closed loop well construction. There is a $250.00 application fee and inspections are conducted by the Environmental Health staff.
Many homes in rural areas are not connected to a municipal water system, but instead have a private well for their daily water supply. When installing, repairing or replacing a well, the owners will need to hire a Licensed Well-Pump Contractor for existing wells and a Licensed Well-Driller for a new or replaced well.
Typically, the contractor will complete the Water Well Permit Application, with your assistance, and submit the permit application to the Macoupin County Health Department for you.
Once the application is submitted, the health department will review the plans and work with the contractor to reach an approval within 7 – 10 business days.
The Illinois Department of Public Health suggests that well-water used for drinking be tested on a yearly basis. Other reasons for having your well water tested could include having someone in the home that is pregnant or immune compromised. Homeowners can obtain a Well-Water Test Kit for a nominal fee by visiting the MCPHD office at 112 S Macoupin St, Gillespie or calling 217-839-4101.
The Illinois Water Well Construction Code requires any abandoned well to be sealed within 30 days after abandonment. If a well or boring is in such a state of disrepair that it has the potential for transmitting contaminants into groundwater or otherwise threatens the public health or safety, it also must be sealed.
Where an abandoned well is found to contaminate a potable water supply, the owner of the abandoned well is responsible for providing a safe and sufficient supply of water to the owner of the well that has been contaminated.
Sealing Abandoned Wells
A licensed well driller must seal an abandoned well. A homeowner may seal his or her own well if a written request is made describing the procedures and materials to be used, all of which must comply with the well code. Macoupin County Public Health Department must be notified 48 hours prior to start of the work to seal such wells and a completed sealing form must be submitted after the sealing is finished.
If you have any questions regarding this program please call the Environmental Health Division at 217-839-4101.